• Dubai’s VARA penalizes OPNX with a $2.7M fine for not meeting market requirements.
• Both associated coins, $FLEX & $OX, saw a 7% drop following the legal setbacks.
• This is the largest penalty imposed by Dubai authorities since their establishment last year.

Dubai Regulator Slaps OPNX with $2.7M Fine

Dubai’s Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority (VARA) has issued a penalty notice to crypto exchange OPNX for failing to register with local authorities, costing the firm an estimated $1.8 million or 10 million in United Arab Emirates Dirhams (AED). Following this news, both associated coins – $FLEX & $OX – tumbled by 7%.

The Controversial Duo behind OPNX Exchange

This legal trouble follows the controversial crypto entrepreneurs Su Zhu and Kyle Davies who stumbled into massive penalties for breaking Dubai’s regulatory rules earlier this year. The pair launched an exchange focused on debt claims in an attempt to soften the blow of cryptocurrency market mishaps in 2022.

UAE Joins Financial Action Task Force

This fine falls under UAE’s new ruling from last year which requires every crypto firm in the region to register with VARA as part of its crusade to get off Financial Action Task Force’s unfavorable gray list. The intergovernmental organization formed in 1989 accused UAE’s authorities of not doing enough to stop illicit funds flowing into its economy.

Arthur Hayes‘ Criticism of OPNX Exchange

When OPNX was launched, it experienced a languid start and faced backlash from the crypto community – including BitMEX co-founder Arthur Hayes who sarcastically commented that the exchange is working on “making it up” both its negative margins and unsettled debt from Three Arrows Capital (3AC).


The hefty penalty imposed by UAE authorities goes down in history books as one of the biggest fines since their establishment last year and serves as an example for other firms operating within UAE borders that must adhere to local regulations or risk facing similar consequences.